Contrary to general expectations, the Arewa Youths Consultative Forum is insisting that its threat to forcibly eject Nigerians of Igbo origin from the Northern states by October 1 deadline still holds.
The group had earlier issued the quit notice which generated a broad reactions from Nigerians, many of condemned such sabre rattling which is generally feared could degenerate to breakdown of law and order.
The AYCF, whose chairman, Nastura Shariff was in the company of the National President of Arewa Consultative Youth Forum, Shettima Yerima, during a news briefing in Kano on Thursday, said that at no point in time did the group recant on it’s earlier injunction.
According to him, the group has sent what it termed all the atrocities of the Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu to the United Nations, UN.
“We stand by our notice to Igbo but those who are interested in Nigeria can stay. But for those who are not interested, you can go,” he said.
“Our mission is for peace; the unity of Nigeria is being threatened by the current agitation from the Igbo and we want to make sure that those who are interested in Nigeria stay but those who are not interested should go. The purpose of town hall meeting in Kano is to review the early stand took and we are collecting views of people here from the north-west. We will also move to north-central and north-east on whether to maintain our position or reconsider it. He also said that they have written to UN about Kanu’s atrocities.
“That is why we told you that our quit notice still stands and our resolve that anybody who doesn’t want to stay in Nigeria should vacate our region still stands but we are not going to use force to actualize that. We will do it through peaceful means, this is because of the fact that one cannot be living with us and talking Biafra,”
“We don’t have the right to force the people to go. So, we are using peaceful means because don’t have police and army.”
The Arewa group had, at a meeting in Kaduna on June 6, given Ndigbo living in the north till October 1st to vacate the 19 northern states. Although shortly after the eviction order, Nasir el-Rufai, governor of Kaduna state, had asked security agencies to arrest those behind it. But till date, no arrests have been made.